Practical analysis for investment professionals
24 January 2014

Weekend Reads for Advisers: Luck, Work, and Happiness

Posted In: Weekend Reads

Don’t fret. This is not the “self-help” edition of weekend reads, even though the headline might lead you to think so. It just so happens that luck versus skill, work (and it’s evil twin overwork), and investor happiness are topics tackled in three separate articles. Here, in case you missed them, are some interesting reads I came across over the past few weeks:

Risk Management/Probability/Mathematics



Luck vs. Skill


The Business of Wealth Management

Work-Life (im)Balance

  • A 2008 Harvard Business School survey of 1,000 professionals found that 94% worked 50 hours or more a week, and almost half worked in excess of 65 hours a week. “Overwork,” writes James Surowiecki in “The Cult of Overwork,” “has become a credential of prosperity.” (The New Yorker)

Elder Care / Retirement

  • A New Vocabulary for Retirement Planning” (Morningstar)
  • Here is a sobering statistic: “Your odds of needing long-term care — care to help you with the activities of daily living — are seven out of 10.” Perhaps that wouldn’t seem so bad if it weren’t for the fact that most of us are woefully unprepared when it comes to paying for this type of care. According to “Long-Term Care of Your Personal Finances,” “there are three ways to pay for long-term care: By self-insuring (i.e., having no insurance, and paying all of your costs out of pocket); by having some sort of long-term care insurance coverage; and by relying on Medicaid, which requires that you exhaust almost all of your financial resources in order for the government to pay for your care. If your goal is to stay in your own home as long as possible and to maintain control over your care for as long as possible, consider purchasing some form of long-term care insurance. The more coverage you pay for, the more choices you will have.” (AAII Journal)
  • Elder care is such an important topic that, for the first time, we have added a session to the agenda for our upcoming wealth management conference in California: “The Elder Care Imperative: What Client Decisions Now Will Make a Difference Later?” Bernard A. Krooks, founding partner Littman Krooks LLP, will discuss:
    • Financing long-term care: What are your options?
    • Preparing for tomorrow: What steps need to be taken now?
    • Planning elder law: What impact will the Affordable Care Act have?
  • What You Need to Know about Asset Transfers That Affect Medicaid’s 5-Year Lookback” (The Daily News)
  • Wealth Management 2014 speaker Bill Reichenstein (and other experts) on saving money with smart social security withdrawals: “When Is the Right Time to Claim Social Security?” (The Wall Street Journal)
  • In “That Retirement Time Bomb,” Linda Stern writes that “the baby boom generation is moving into retirement with something no other generation has had: huge tax liabilities” but that “you can cut your retirement taxes considerably with some careful pre- and post-retirement tax planning,” including “learning to love” the Roth IRA. (Reuters)

And Now For Something Completely Different

  • A beautiful and wistful short film:


Please note that the content of this site should not be construed as investment advice, nor do the opinions expressed necessarily reflect the views of CFA Institute.

Photo credit: ©

About the Author(s)
Lauren Foster

Lauren Foster was a content director on the professional learning team at CFA Institute and host of the Take 15 Podcast. She is the former managing editor of Enterprising Investor and co-lead of CFA Institute’s Women in Investment Management initiative. Lauren spent nearly a decade on staff at the Financial Times as a reporter and editor based in the New York bureau, followed by freelance writing for Barron’s and the FT. Lauren holds a BA in political science from the University of Cape Town, and an MS in journalism from Columbia University.

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